Self-guided bullets are now a thing

Those seven words have sharp-shooters shivering in their boots. Researchers at Sandia National Laboratories have developed a laser-guided bullet. From the Washington Post: “At 4 inches long and a half-inch in diameter, the bullet directs itself like a tiny guided missile and can hit a target more than a mile away. It’s designed to twist and turn, making up to 30 corrections per second.” Tucked on board each .50-caliber bullet is an optical sensor that follows a laser beam locked on the target.

Sandia hasn’t started mass-producing the bullets. It’s currently looking for a buyer. When I first read about this, the image of a gun-toting soldier squinting through a view finder in the desert came to mind. But really that’s yesterday’s battlefield. Think about what happens when laser-guided bullets are strapped on to nano quadrocopters. This is future war.

 

About the author

Marc Sanchez is the technical director and associate producer for Marketplace Tech Report where he is responsible for shaping the sound of the show.

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